Thinking Skills and Problem Solving Introduction Thinking skills involve the ability to characterize an intentional application such as analysis, recognition of a problem, inference, evaluation and being able to solve problems. Thinking skills are very important in the modern world as they help in solving problems which an individual can be facing in their daily lives. There can be soft skills and hard skills which can be used in solving of the problems. The skills depend on the strength of an individual and the education which they have in their training if they have had the ability to attend any. Creativity is a key factor as it leads to effectiveness in problem solving. There are steps which can be followed in solving of certain problems. Halimah needs to involve critical thinking in her ability to solve the problem which she is facing of being in love with the IT technician who is older than her. This is because her parents are not happy with her decision to be in love with the technician as they have a lot of expectations in terms of her helping them in the future when she gets employment. She has to solve the problem in an amicable way such that they can agree without any party being in disagreement ( Wallace, Maker & Cave, 2004). Identify and analysis of problem/Issue Halima Being in love and ready to be married to the IT technician in their college is an issue. This is because Halima has been considered to be too young to be married to the technician. The age difference is too much to be just ignored hence the need to avoid by all means if she can. The requirement is that she should be through with her studies in order to start working and help her family. The problem can be solved by Halima being willing to litsen to her parents who will then guide her in order to avoid any conflict that could emerge in the future. He IT technician should also be reasonate with Halima and advice her to wait such that they can marry in the future when the right time come for both Halima and the IT technician. In this case therefore both Halima and the parents will be in agreement and stop complaining about the behavior which are being portrayed by Halima. They should not have organized for a marriage that soon given that the parents of Halima have not approved the realationship (Elliott, Oty, McArthur & Clark, 2001). Halima is the eldest child in their family and she is required to help her younger brothers and sisters in their family once she is done with college. This is a challenge that requires her to think critically and the possible ways through which she can help her family rather than after finishing college. The fact that she is in deep love with the IT technician portrays a message that she is willing to in that relation come what may. Therefore, they can solve the problem through the IT technician being in the position to provide for the family as she could do while she is on employment. In this way then wheile she is married, it could not be a big deal for her to play the role she had to play while in employment (Puccio, Murdock & Mance, 2005) Johan is required to advice Halima which he is not doing as IT technician in the college. He is required to play the role of a parent instead of proposing for a marriage in the following which Halima could not have completed he college studies. This is quite challeng for a young Halima who is 10 year younger than Johan. Application of the four stages in problem solving Problem solving process can be divided into four stages which have various labels. It becomes easy to understand a problem thus making it successful. One needs to identify the problem then going to finding a possible solution, choosing the best solution and implementing the problem. Identification and definition of the problem. It is the first step that needs to be taken in order to solve the problem. The problem that is in context is recognised in order to know how many of such roblem so exist. It should not await until a problem is serious in order to solve it. Specific techniques can be used in order to help in recognizing the problems and opportunities that will exist as a result of solving the problem. A label can be given to the problem with a tentative definition. The problem can then be described and the circumstances which surround the problems. The open-ended provlems are also defined. Finding Possible solutions Questions that are closed have a limited number of solutions unlike open-ended questions which have a number of possible solutions. The best solution is selected from a number of solutions which are presented. The problem that emanates as a result of a relationship between Halima and Johan is closed therefore a limited number of solutions can exist such as the technician being able to wait for Halima to complete school. Analysis needs to be done to the problem in order to find possible solutions and a real cause is confirmed. Construction of the courses and possible solutions is also necessary (Carson, 2007). Choosing the best solution Evaluation is done in order to find possible solutions as well the selection of the possible and most effective ways in which a problem can be solved. The features of ideal solution are provided such as advicing the technician to wait for Halima to finish college. Elimination of the solutions that can be against an ideal solution. Evaluation and remaining of the solutions which leads to best outcome and making of decision on how to implement the final problem. Implementing the solution it can involve sperate solutions such as planning and preparing of the solution to be implemented. Appropriate action being undertaken to monitor the effects and reviewing of the success of the action that will be taken. It culminates all the efforts that need to be taken in order to have a careful planning. There is the description of the process that has to be followed in the implementation of the problem that is stated. Smooth monitoring od the situation should be put into consideration in order to have the final solution being in agreement with the needs. The possible solutions in regard to the relationship of Halima have to be considered carefully in order to have the best solution (Palincsar & Brown, 1988). Relate to the Evidence-Driven Decision-Making Cycle The decision making process has a sequence of steps which have to be solved in a circular manner. The first stage of the process begins with triggering whatever an individual thinks. The data and ideas help in the process of action which is important stage. It can be used in the process of finding the patterns and trens which are identified in the process. Exploring is the next stage which gives a preliminary exploration in order to pinpoint the issues which could be in existence. Question which needs to be answered should be discussed in the process (Snyder & Snyder, 2008). Getting information is the middle process which requires to assemble all the data that has been obtained. The evidence can also be generated in the process. Analysis which involves setting data and relating the evidence that is in existence enables one to look for the trends which results to answering the questions. There should be care not to obtain results which are out of scope. Different techniques and methods can be used to find analysis by grouping the data into different groups which correspond to the techniques which are in existence. Interpretation of the results follows. It involves the elaboration of the terms which have been used in different contexts and any other important that coud not be understood by an individual. Clarity of the knowledge that is involved is also done such that insight is gained in the process. Critical analysis need to be done in order to have important data classified. Changing and evaluating of the information is the final stage. It can be done by intervening such that a design and implementation plan is identified to gain suitability. The actions need to be manageable. Evaluation needs to be done in orde to decide on the evidence and achieve successful intervention that is required. Reflection is also very important as the knowledge that has been gathered is analyzed. Further investigation can be done in order to suggest anything that is available. The practice and maintenance has to be analyzes (Wallace, et. Al, 2004). In conclusion, thinking and problem solving are very important aspects in any proble that can exist either to an individual or an organization set up. The four stages which are used in solving of the problem can be applied in order to have the best outcome being witnessed. Halima and Johan should have applied the problem solving techniques in order to overcome the problem that is at hand. Thus they could help the parents of Johan from experiencing more problems such as taking care of the young ones who were the brothers and sisters of Halima. Part 2 Introduction The problem in this context is poor performance by the student. This has led to the emergence of other problems for instance; the dismal performance could lead to the student possibly not completing her studies in her career and having a love affair that is not healthy for the student, breaking the promise that she made to the loved one and possibly the loss of a relationship. The cascade of these problems will highly have an impact on the life of the student both, physically, psychologically, spiritually and socially (Drago, 2004). The student being a Muslim, she needs to uphold the Muslim doctrines that states that a person should never engage in sex before they are married. Furthermore, she is already engaged to someone and the kind of decision she will make should consider this factor with seriousness. The age difference between the student and the tutor is a problem on its own that needs to be looked into when making the decision. In addition, the learner-tutor relationship also gives the odds of that should be used in the basis of making a decision. A tutor who wants sexual gains from the student identifies the problem and tries to find a quick decision using his coercive power to gain want he wants from the student. He therefore gives a possible solution to the student’s problem that will help him gain what he really yearned from the student. Problem/Issue Identification The student needs to make a concrete and sound decision on the problem without falling into the trap from the tutor and this is possible if the student identifies the problem that is leading to the existence of all other problems and that is poor academic performance, and look for a long lasting morally and spiritually acceptable solution. This requires the student’s problem solving skills. Problem solving A number of tools that can be used to solve problems but in this case, Paul Foster’s five root-cause analysis tools will be used to solve the problem more effectively. The tools include; the Pareto chart, the five whys, fishbone diagram, scatters diagram and the failure mode and effects analysis. For the student in this situation the five whys tool will be more appropriate for solving her problem (Matsumoto, Yoo & Fontaine, 2008). The five whys tool is a tool in which the person in the problem asks himself or herself questions. In this case, the student needs to ask himself or herself question such has why are they performing so dismally in their academics, why the lecturer wants to improve their performance, why the lecturer chose to have a love affair in the exchange For example, asking why there is such problem will create an insight, what the problem is and on the loops that can be zipped to curb the problem. In this case, the possible causes of poor academic performance would be poor time management or lack of concentration in class or inability to complete assignments given. The identification of the cause of poor performance in studies and finding of the appropriate solution will greatly improve the situation. Also asking why the tutor wants to help the students in bettering her grades will give the student an picture of what the tutor wants to achieve by so doing. This will enable the student avoid that solution for the poor performance for it will lead to a myriad of other problems which can be very difficult to solve (Bailly, et. Al, 1999). The student asking himself or herself a question like why the lecturer chose to have a love affair with the for the favor will lead to the student identifying the motive of the solution provided and hence a better judgment can be made by the student when making the decision on solution will be given to the situation. This can lead to the avoidance the solution that does not solve the problem amicably. Elaboration on the solution of the problem The solution which the Muslim student should embrace is to work hard hard in her studies in order to improve in her academic performance. In this way therefore she would be able to avoid the tutor who is taking her failure as an advantage to engage her in a relation. The student should also consider the age of the lecturer which is 40 while she is less than 20 years old. This implies that the relation cannot last for long instead it is just away to have him being favored because he in charge of examinations. She should be consistent in her performance such that it is possible to avoid the lecturer leading to her failure in the exams. By concentrating on her studies, she will have the capability to improve in terms of academics leading to avoiding the problem. She can also wait until she is done with her studies in order to start a relationship as she would be able to concentrate on the relationship alone rather than the studies. All the problems that are academic related will be solved for her. The parents can also advice her to work hard in school so that she can proceed to the next level (Karabenick & Knapp, 19901). Conclusion Self-reflection Relationships can be important in the social life of a student but it should be done with a lot of care which implies that the performance in terms of academics can be affected if a student concentrates too much on the relationship. It is therefore important to follow the advice of the parents and teachers as they care a lot about the well-being of the students. One should make careful choices on who is to engage in a relationship while they are students because this can affect them in future of their lives (May & Etkina, 2002). References Wallace, B., Maker, J., Cave, D., & Chandler, S. (2004). Thinking skills and problem solving. Snyder, L. G., & Snyder, M. J. (2008). Teaching critical thinking and problem solving skills. The Journal of Research in Business Education, 50(2), 90. Palincsar, A. S., & Brown, A. L. (1988). Teaching and practicing thinking skills to promote comprehension in the context of group problem solving. 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